Blues 3-0 Loughborough University (25-21, 25-23, 25-9)
Manor Community College, 14/01/2009
After 8 matches in the BUCS qualification league, the Womens Blues team needed to finish with wins in order to have any chance of getting to the K.O. round. A tough prospect was in store with the Loughborough match as the first of these, but the Blues did have home advantage, meaning that a full team was available to play.
Cambridge started strongly in both of the first two sets, pushing away to 6 point leads, only to see the Loughborough team edge back into the game at the end of each. Consistent serving from Cambridge put the Loughborough serve-receive under pressure, and a turn around in defense cover saw the Blues able to effectively block and pick up most of the Loughborough attack. Both Sarah and Anna worked well in the middle, each scoring kill blocks on the main Loughborough middle and left-side hitters, and scored with hard hit attacks and positional tips. Saz and Caroline, recently back from injury, coordinated well in the swing-hit position, Saz pulling off some remarkable cover dives and hard attacks through the Loughborough block. With a tactical swap of Alex for Dierdre through the back-court in the second set, the Cambridge serve-receive was strengthened enough and the Blues were able to close out the closest set of the match. The third set saw a Loughborough collapse and a gearing up of the Cambridge game, with four aces, two from setter Florence. With long runs of play and excellent defense and recycling against the best Loughborough attacks, Cambridge took long points runs and kept the league leaders below 10 for the set.
A promising match for a Blues team that is starting to find its feet.
MVP was Sarah
Report by Jon Clarke
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